Global Business of Soccer Recap

Here are some of the top stories from the world of global soccer business from last week…

Leeds United 49ersLeeds United and the San Francisco 49ers: An Unlikely Partnership (Business of Soccer)

In 1994, the FIFA World Cup was played in nineteen cities of the United States for the first time.  This marked an historic moment for soccer in the U.S.A.  The largest growing youth sport in the nation was thrust into the public eye.  The 1994 World Cup was a massive financial success and paved the way for the inaugural season of Major League Soccer, a top flight soccer league which would soon carve out a sizeable piece of the sports landscape in the U.S.

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Deloitte Football Money League 2014Deloitte’s “Football Money League” Posts €5.4 Billion (Business of Soccer)

“Revenue for the world’s 20 highest earning clubs reached €5.4bn last season, recording growth of over €400m (8%), according to the 17th edition of the Football Money League from Deloitte.” – Deloitte Press Release

Champions League and domestic dominance may be the primary goals of any world-class player plying his trade in the beautiful game, but speak to any Owner, President, or CFO of a major club and they’ll tell you that Deloitte’s annual “Football Money League” is the revenue based competition that every organization wants to be appearing in.

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Jerome ChampagneFormer FIFA Deputy Tosses His Name Into the Presidential Hat (Business of Soccer)

Former FIFA deputy general secretary Jerome Champagne officially announced his candidacy for the presidency of the world’s soccer governing body on Monday. Champagne told reporters, “We need a different FIFA, more democratic, more respected, which behaves better and which does more.”

Current FIFA president Sepp Blatter has held the position since taking over for his predecessor Joao Havelange in 1998, and has been re-elected three times in 2002, 2007, and 2011 but has yet to announce any plans to run again when his term expires in 2015.

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mlsWhat’s Wrong with MLS, If Anything? (Part I, Understanding Roster Rules) (Business of Soccer)

When news of Michael Bradley’s return to MLS at the age of 26 first broke on Twitter, blogs, and real-time news sources, immediate reactions varied from disbelief and skepticism to accusations of unfairness to claims of another victory for the growth of MLS.  As the dust settled on the discussion of the Bradley transfer, rumors began circulating that MLS attempted to block the transfer of U.S. international Maurice Edu to the Philadelphia Union, a rumor that Union CEO Nick Sakiewicz immediately refuted. The MLS-as-the-ultimate-decision-maker narrative, however, is not an uncommon story in the headlines.

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BOS_CuritibaCuritiba Venue Relying on Emergency World Cup Measures (Reuters)

Organisers have taken emergency measures to help ensure the stadium in Curitiba will be ready for the World Cup kickoff in June, Brazilian Deputy Sports Minister Luis Fernandes said on Thursday.

An additional 39 million Brazilian reals ($16.32 million) has been released to builders while officials are considering adding a third shift so that work is carried out around the clock, Fernandes told a news conference in Rio de Janeiro.

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BOS_AviancaWorld Cup Brazil Flight Delays to Result in Airline Fines (Bloomberg)

Remote Amazon airports, new computer operating systems and too-short runways are among the challenges for airlines including Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes SA (GOLL4) as they shuttle 3.6 million people around Brazil during the World Cup soccer championship.

Failing to deliver passengers to their destinations in a timely manner could come with a hefty price tag: as much as 3.2 million reais ($1.3 million) in fines per flight.

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BOS_HoenessGerman Prosecutors Raid Tax Office Over Hoeness Leak (Reuters)

German prosecutors conducted raids on Bavarian tax authorities on Thursday as part of a probe into the leaking of confidential records of Uli Hoeness, the Bayern Munich soccer club president who stunned Germany last year by admitting to tax dodging.

In a statement, prosecutors in Munich said they were acting on a complaint by Hoeness, who admitted to authorities last January that he had not paid taxes on assets stashed in a secret Swiss bank account and was forced to go public with the admission three months later when confronted by journalists.

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BOS_AnelkaZoopla Sponsorship Dispute with West Bromwich Albion: What Options are Available to Clubs and Sponsors? (F.C. Business)

Property website Zoopla has announced that it is to end its sponsorship of West Bromwich Albion FC at the end of the current season.  The announcement is the culmination of an on-going dispute between club and sponsor concerning the goal celebrations of Nicolas Anelka.

Anelka is alleged to have made a “quenelle” gesture (claimed to be a “Nazi salute in reverse”) following a goal against West Ham united in December last year.  Since then Zoopla has been putting increasing pressure on the club to drop Anelka from the squad.

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BOS_Barca logoBarca Chief Departs with Fans Unhappy About Transparency (Reuters)

Less than four years after Sandro Rosell was elected Barcelona president with a record number of votes he has resigned amid concerns over transparency and claims of underhand dealings surrounding Neymar’s transfer.

It is often said only half in jest that the Barca presidency is the most important job in Catalonia, ahead of the leader of the local government, due to the power the club hold through their fan base and the way they represent the local region.

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BOS_VauxhallLiverpool Partner with Vauxhall (Soccerex)

Liverpool FC have announced British carmaker Vauxhall as their official automotive partner in a deal that runs until the end of the 2015/16 Premier League season.

The new agreement, announced on Friday, kicks off with Liverpool’s home game against league leaders Arsenal on 8th February and replaces the club’s existing four-year deal with Chevrolet, which was due to run until 2016.

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Reporting on the business side of the world's game.